· Glycated hemoglobin (A1C) test – This blood test indicates your average blood sugar level for the past two to three months. It measures the percentage of blood sugar attached to hemoglobin, the oxygen-carrying protein in red blood cells. The higher your blood sugar levels, the more hemoglobin you’ll have with sugar attached. An A1C level of 6.5 percent or higher on two separate tests indicates that you have diabetes. An A1C between 5.7 and 6.4 percent indicates prediabetes. Below 5.7 is considered normal.
If the A1C test results aren’t consistent, the test isn’t available, or if you have certain conditions that can make the A1C test inaccurate — such as if you’re pregnant or have an uncommon form of hemoglobin (known as a hemoglobin variant) — your doctor may use the following tests to diagnose diabetes:
· Random blood sugar test – A blood sample will be taken at a random time.
· Fasting blood sugar test – A blood sample will be taken after an overnight fast. A fasting blood sugar level less than (5.6 mmol/L) is normal. A fasting blood sugar level from 5.6 to 6.9 mmol/L is considered prediabetes.
· Oral glucose tolerance test – For this test, you fast overnight, and the fasting blood sugar level is measured. Then you drink a sugary liquid, and blood sugar levels are tested periodically for the next two hours. A blood sugar level less than 7.8 mmol/L is normal. A reading of more than 11.1 mmol/L after two hours indicates diabetes.
If type 1 diabetes is suspected, your urine will be tested to look for the presence of a byproduct produced when muscle and fat tissue are used for energy when the body doesn’t have enough insulin to use the available glucose (ketones). Your doctor will also likely run a test to see if you have the destructive immune system cells associated with type 1 diabetes called autoantibodies.